CD25890, a conserved protein that modulates sporulation initiation in Clostridioides difficile

Diogo Martins, Michael A. DiCandia, Aristides L. Mendes, Daniela Wetzel, Shonna M. McBride, Adriano O. Henriques, Mónica Serrano

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1 Citation (Scopus)


Bacteria that reside in the gastrointestinal tract of healthy humans are essential for our health, sustenance and well-being. About 50–60% of those bacteria have the ability to produce resilient spores that are important for the life cycle in the gut and for host-to-host transmission. A genomic signature for sporulation in the human intestine was recently described, which spans both commensals and pathogens such as Clostridioides difficile and contains several genes of unknown function. We report on the characterization of a signature gene, CD25890, which, as we show is involved in the control of sporulation initiation in C. difficile under certain nutritional conditions. Spo0A is the main regulatory protein controlling entry into sporulation and we show that an in-frame deletion of CD25890 results in increased expression of spo0A per cell and increased sporulation. The effect of CD25890 on spo0A is likely indirect and mediated through repression of the sinRR´ operon. Deletion of the CD25890 gene, however, does not alter the expression of the genes coding for the cytotoxins or the genes involved in biofilm formation. Our results suggest that CD25890 acts to modulate sporulation in response to the nutrients present in the environment.

Original languageEnglish
Article number7887
JournalScientific Reports
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2021


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